Peterson Contractors, Inc began installing the Geopier system for the Project AWAYSIS lodge and water parks on Monday. The Geopiers being sunk into the site are a proven and cost effective solution to providing support and stability to sensitive structures like the lodge and water parks, city officials said.
Geopiers were developed in 1989 and have been used around the United States on several high profile projects including the International Place Tower III in Memphis, TN and the Jordan Creek Mall in Des Moines.
The process for installation of Geopiers begins with the drilling of a cavity. These cavities usually range between 7 to 30 feet depending on the design guidelines. In the case of the Lodge and the water parks, the deepest piers are around 25 feet deep. Once the cavities are drilled, layers of aggregate are placed in the cavity in thin layers. Crews will then use a patented beveled tamper to ram each layer of aggregate using vertical impact energy. The process creates the strength and stiffness of the pier. Once the pier has been compacted, a footing is added to the top and attached to the piers.
Peterson will have two crews on site for the Storm Lake project which is expected to last about two weeks depending on weather. Once crews have set up the equipment they will drill a test pier to ensure quality. This hole will be tested over five days with a test load that would be representative of the project in Storm Lake. Crews can put in about 20 deep piers a day and about 30 of the shallow piers in one day.
"We are excited to see the next phase of the construction process begin. If all goes well, the installation of the Geopiers will be completed just before the lodge construction contractor is ready to begin," stated Mike Wilson, Project AWAYSIS Manager.
For safety reasons, the city is requesting that no one other than contractors and authorized inspectors should enter the project site by vehicle or on foot. Individuals wishing to watch the installation of the Geopiers are encouraged to view construction through the Internet via the AWAYSIS Web Cam provided by Rebnord Technologies. The web cam can be accessed from the project web site www.awaysis.com, and will be available for real-time viewing of the construction progress throughout the summer.